Tag Archives: interconnections

How Creativity and a simple daily plan contribute to holistic wellbeing.

‘Wellness is the complete integration of body, mind and spirit – the realisation that everything we do, think, feel and believe has an effect on our state of well-being’.   Greg Anderson. 

Through Mother Nature we see how all of life is interconnected. – watercolour27164538_10156023231000396_5682597220846199362_oWhat is Holistic wellbeing?  

Holistic wellbeing is characterised by the treatment of the whole person.    It is to look at the self from a whole (holistic) perspective and to understand the mind, body, spirit connection.  

To change one fraction of a painting, – changes the whole painting.     This is true for we humans….to change one small part of ourselves, (positively or negatively), changes the whole. 

watercolour20180610_130630-1In our ever more complex and stressful day to day living, finding ways to balance the different aspects of our lives can at times seem overwhelming.     It is for this reason that I believe to make changes, we first need to create a simple daily plan.  

The following are some of the things that have helped me over the years.

Movement to enhance physical wellbeing –  A daily walk – a stretching routine – dance.   (we don’t have to run a marathon).

Emotional  wellbeing  – We can do this by removing unnecessary technical stuff.    Do we really need our phones on 24/7?

Clearing the space in which we live helps to clear the mind and the body.

Keeping pen and paper close at hand to write down thoughts and feelings.   Emptying our heads before going to sleep by writing down anything that is causing distress or disruption.

Spiritual food –    The creative process in all it’s many forms can feed this need.   Painting, writing, music, gardening, cooking and colour all help to feed our senses and enhance our imagination and observational skills.       

Without establishing simple routines, our creativity can be neglected.    My little book – The Apple Exercise – is all about making space in our daily lives to explore our creativity.     In the book I suggest fifteen minute exercises.

Each person has to create their own simple daily plan, one that works for them.

When we address these simple needs we experience a sense of wellbeing.

This watercolour exercise demonstrates that as we change one small portion of a painting, or ourselves, the whole changes. 

20-11-15-1-726Allow time for a new simple daily plan to become part of who you are….change one element at a time.20-11-15-1-728It takes 28 days to form a new habit.       The key is to be persistent and consistent.        20-11-15-1-729As we make positive simple changes, stress is replaced with a calmness which supports the whole.     This is holistic well-being.    20-11-15-1-731Everything I write in this blog comes from personal experience.    I came up with a simple daily plan for myself thirty-two years ago, when I recognised that my own life had become overwhelming – out of control.       Feeling overwhelmed and fragmented affected my physical, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.

You might say that at that time, I had an epiphany, a sudden and striking realisation that I needed and wanted to change.

To make these changes, I started with a very simple daily plan.    Slowly but surely my life improved beyond recognition.

With these tried and true tools in place – I am now able to face stressful situations in a much more constructive way.

‘The key is changing our habits and, in particular, the habits of the mind’.   Buddhist Offerings. 

watercolour27164812_10156033362095396_1542881300197917602_oA Bientot


From Childhood to Childlike….

On a windy morning this past week, I saw a young child running after leaves left over from the autumn.       I could see the child’s joy and excitement.

Maya – one of my youngest models from the Boathouse Studio series.   Watercolour. 


In that moment I was taken back to my own childhood and in particular an experience I had when I was about seven years old.      It was a another very windy day and I was riding my bike down a hill enjoying the feeling  that I was flying with the wind.

Observing the little child this week, I was reminded of the playfulness, joy and curiosity inherent in childhood and how vital a foundation block this period of our life is as we move through adolescence into adulthood.

Rapid watercolour demonstration – during workshop on the banks of the River Usk, Wales.    Children frolicking in the water….  circa 2004

glen Usk Estate

As we move into adolescence we have a need to find the truth about ourselves.  We no longer  accept the advice of others – preferring to learn by our own personal experience.  I remember this period so well…both as a child and a parent…..

Rapid watercolour of adolescent French boy  – circa 1995. 


Then as we reach adulthood, we become more caring and responsible for the world around us.   We discover a strong desire to fulfil our own unique expression of life.     We begin to gain perspective and to stay in touch with our heart.

My daughter Christie – watercolour – circa January 2016. 

20-11-15 - 1 (116)

As we age, having seen many cycles of birth and death, a certain wisdom grows within.

Watercolour – Madame Nottale – France  circa 2012


A childlike quality is revealed.

I have observed this with my 95 year old Mother and many others who have reached old age.     The delight in a ninety year old’s eyes when a dog or young child visits is the same sort of delight shown by children chasing leaves or experiencing other simple pleasures.

A wonderful quote from Pablo Picasso – 

‘Every child is an artist.   The problem is how to remain an artist once he/she grows up.’  

Today we can fly above all the madness and be playful like magical hummingbirds…..watercolour


A Bientôt       





Tapestries at Hampton Court Palace

For the past week, I have had a close friend visiting from Paris and so we did some local sight seeing.    Hampton Court Palace, one of the homes of King Henry VIII, is very close to where I live.

In this post, I will show some details from the ten tapestries in the Great Hall, where King Henry VIII held sumptuous dinners, filled with music, dancing and jest.

The Great Hall, Hampton Court Palace where the tapestries telling the story of Abraham, are housed. 

ImageI am interested in the tapestries as beautiful works of art, and also as possible information for the series of paintings I have been working on for nearly 30 years on the subject of ‘interconnectedness’.

The tapestries were commissioned by King Henry VIII to celebrate the birth of his son, Edward, to his third wife, Jane Seymour in 1537.  Tapestries were the most highly valued art form of the 16th century.   Henry VIII had collected more than 2000 by his death.    They were in fact a display of great wealth.

One of my favourite details from one of the ten tapestries 

ImageNote the movement in the horse.

ImageImageIt is often assumed that tapestries are made by women, but in fact during the 16th century this was the work of highly skilled men who had been trained from a very young age. 

The work began with a small painting known as the ‘Petit Patron’ – This is enlarged by the designer into a full scale cartoon.


The value of a tapestry was determined by the artistic quality of the cartoon, skill of the weavers and the density of weave. 

The tapestries in the Great Hall, are interwoven with sliver and gold thread….


I am always aware of the interconnection when viewing work from previous centuries…..

As we walked around the Palace we bumped into one of the courtiers.    Claudia and courtier.


Claudia returned home yesterday after what was a very special week together.


A Bientôt